Sunday, September 30, 2012

Brooks Run Happy Profile: Khoo Yit Kiat

Khoo Yit Kiat (KYK) is known as the 'Kenyalang' or 'Kenyan Kuning' within the KL running community. He is THAT famous!

I didn't know he was that famous until I joined his running group and every runner on the street would greet him along the way. ;)

Previously, Jamie did a mini interview on him (here) and I thought since it's been a while now, we'd better catch KYK for a quick update!

[I am also taking this opportunity to label this as a Dutamas Runners' Interview!]

1. You have been lying low for a while now and the last we saw you was running the half marathon at the Standard Chartered KL Marathon 2012. What’s up?

I can’t even remember what races I’ve done. I’ve been so busy at work plus getting married this year (well, we just had our wedding reception!). Anyways, my niggling left foot injury can’t seem to heal as well as I thought.

I'm putting on weight (I guess no one would believe me in this, but I have put on almost 7kg!). That’s explain why I cannot rush back into speed in my training, which I was able to do last time.

(photo credit to Lim Soon Chung)

2. You’ve been running since your high school heydays. Do you think you will ever get tired of running, and maybe venture into something else?

I don’t know. But I’ve seen my running friends still doing well over 50 years of age and I guess I will try to emulate them. Although it’s embarrassing to get beaten by a 50-year-old at times but it’s something we should look into as to why they can still perform well at that age.

Especially when you talk to the younger generation who keep giving excuses, “Oh, I'm too old too run”. I hope I can still run as long as I can.

It will be a privilege to do so, don’t you think?

3. What’s your favourite race distance – 5km, 10km, 21km or the full marathon at 42.195km, and why? 

I started my running days racing the 1500m, 3000m and 5000m and I’ve always love the speed endurance race. As I aged, a 10km-21km race seems to be the preference. But once in a while, I still love to test myself in the shorter distances. Speed thrills!

I still have not mastered the marathon race as well as I want. Hopefully I will get to train for another one soon, as it does take a proper program to take you through the distance in a respectful time.

4. What’s your favourite pre-race and post-race food? 

I eat as I please. No special pre or post race diet. I used to try out eating “Chu yok chap + fan” which means “mixed pork + rice”. I thought it worked well. Anyways, the only advice I have is don’t try anything out of the ordinary on pre-race day.

5. You’re the Captain of the Dutamas Runners group, which seem to have a passion for food. If you woke up one day to find that the Dutamas Runners have renamed themselves to Dutamas Eaters, what would you do: 
a. Tearfully leave the group and never look back; 
b. Delete the group and recreate a new one, guns ablazing; or 
c. Happily participate in the next nasi lemak and bah kut the gathering. 
Haha. I’ll choose d. None of the above!  

Hey you are crazy asking your captain this sort of question! You know it’s hard to keep the Dutamas Runners to focus on their running when each conversation seems to lead to food. Well, I am a culprit myself sending photos of food over whatsapp. 

Anyway, I hope I can find time to really focus on the group since there are many who are looking to improve on their running, and I hope I can pass on my knowledge and experience to those who need it. 

6. You own one or two pairs of Brooks shoes. What models are they and what’s your take on them? Have they served you well? 

2? I actually have 3! My first Brooks model was the Racer ST 3. It was one of those shoes that I was looking for, lightweight and a little bit of cushioning. I actually did my marathon personal best (PB) in the 2009 Melbourne Marathon

Since then I had Brooks Ghost 2 as a training shoe and the latest I bought was Brooks Racer ST 5. I did my 2012 Boston Marathon in that shoe. However, it was one of those race where I was ill-prepared. I did my personal worst timing of 4:30. I can’t blame the shoe, as I was just too busy at work, left foot injury still bothering me and also finding the motivation to train after a long injury lay-off is hard. 

But I am looking forward to be back on the road soon! 

7. Any wise words for the newbie runners out there? 

I don’t think this page will be enough. Anyways, the way I see it is that these days, newbies tend to run the distance too far too soon. You need time to get your legs accustomed to running on hard surface (as you hardly get to run on softer ground in KL, unlike in overseas). Also newbies tend to get influenced by their friends in doing longer distance that they are unprepared for. Preparation is the key in distance running plus consistency in training. 

Well, I hope you enjoyed reading his interview as much as I had fun (especially with question 5) coming up with the questions for him. Hehehe!

Run Happy with Brooks!

 Other profiles:
Jamie Pang
Ooi Wei Min

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